Woodpile photo by Howie Lisnoff.
Dappled Sunlight On August Woodpile
Wood stacked for fall and winter, perhaps a cold spring… catches the warm dappled afternoon sun and south wind… It is early August… Too soon to contemplate the pain and inevitability of leave-taking.
Rainy scene from a Vietnamese restaurant on Madison Avenue, Albany, NY. Photo by Howie Lisnoff.
Par 4 Near the Killing Fields
Rain pools and flows into east rivers down Madison Avenue in Albany after so many weeks of crackling blue skies and heat. From the window of the Vietnamese restaurant, forty-one years past the mayhem and murder of Southeast Asian children and crimes of grotesque war… They murdered kids at Kent and Jackson, too… They are still killing for power and glory and wealth and God, the kids of Africa and the Middle East and the places between… It does not end… A classic piano solo plays in ever-rising beauty against the gray day as an answer to the madness… It does not work… The sons of bitches have turned this planet into a battlefield for the hell of it. Retirees are golfing near the killing fields.
Cumulus clouds… Photo by Howie Lisnoff.
Great endless trailing masses of white billowing cumulus ride in on a west wind.
Photo of Judson Tower, Washington Square Park by Howie Lisnoff.
Street Scene/Greenwich Village
You burst with unbridled confidence and unadorned beauty
Onto the 60s’ scene of Greenwich Village and Washington Square Park
Coming from work on Wall Street
To the heart of the counterculture
It was summer
You wore a white dress with a floating multicolored balloon motif
Everything was in motion
Your hair catching in radiance the shimmering sun near Judson Tower
This was your summer of the Russian novel
It could have been Anna Karenina or War and Peace or Crime and Punishment
Long, plodding works of much illumination
Did all of this happen in a single, fleeting moment in time?
Was there great hope and change?
Did we have such impeccable ideals?
And unbounded caring?
Summer scene, Washington Square Park, Greenwich Village, N.Y. Photo by Howie Lisnoff.
You walked on Charles Street in the heart of Greenwich Village, your signature sandals against the wet pavement. Our steps echoed magically within the endless city noise. I thought, too cold for bare feet, but you persevered long into the waning season. Perseverance would become your moniker. These were the days of great change and great hope when idealism and fearlessness were indistinguishable. I look across the room at you today, still beautiful in a world of unspeakable horror and ugliness.
View of the Providence’s downtown from the East Side. Photo by Howie Lisnoff.
In the Sun
You lay on the lounge chair on the patio outside of Andrews Hall off of Bowen Street on Providence’s East Side. Your skin glistening with tanning lotion in the late-spring sun, its fragrance of an ocean beach, the sky a robin’s egg blue. It was the perfection of nature and the reality of beauty. It is good to be able to remember amid the chaos of the world that all of this existed for a brief moment and could be preserved in memory.